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M.D. Program

M.D. Program

Suggestions for review books for step 1 of the USMLE

Virtually any source of questions as long as they have explanations. The only exception we have are those published by "MAVAL" which seem to have a rather large number of errors.

Good Computer Based Testing questions are hard to find. Kaplan has their Q-bank and these are good and you can set up a self test.

If you have a PDA, Kaplan also has for purchase a set of questions that you can load and the last time I checked, you can download them and use them for free for 30 days or so. This resource is certainly worth checking into.

To get some practice looking at clinical scenarios, the "Underground Clinical Vignettes" are really quite good. There are no questions with the set but we are building a set of CBT questions to go along with the books.

Ethics questions are becoming more important for all three step exams and one of the better resources for general information is the Psychiatry Recall which addresses ethic issues in its last few chapters.

Clinical Biochemistry Made Ridiculously Easy by Goldberg has the last part of the book dedicated to clinical applications. No questions but concise explanations. Still, one of my favorites are the Clinical Correlations in Devlin's Biochemistry Textbook.

There is nothing wrong with High Yield Facts and First Aid For The Boards, but my caution would be to use these "factoid" sources carefully. This is not a test of how much you have memorized but rather a test of the extent to which you can use the information you have a handle on. I understand that the First Aid section on behavioral sciences is a good review just before you sit for the test (within a couple of days).

We use a matrix to have students review Pharmacology and again the First Aid review is a good overview.

I am absolutely convinced that the first two chapters of Goodman and Gilman's Pharmacology textbook is essential reading for the Step 1 exam.

Both Appleton and Lange (ALERT) and NMS computer questions are good practice.

We have at our Web site, both diagnostic tests and mockboards available for practice.

One of the best Web sites I have seen is the Gold Standard Multimedia page. and it is free. You just register and choose a password and go for it. Questions are not yet in NBME format but the information is solid and extensive.

Another source of Pathology questions is Compton's Review, a paperback the uses Robbins as a source and has questions referenced to the textbook.

Don't forget to make use of the questions on the USMLE disk. My advice is to practice both the Step 1 and Step 2 questions.

For those with PDA's go to and get the reader for free and look around for other free stuff like the Merck manual. Eponyms is a great quick reference and a reminder that is great.

Another reference to be sure to take a look at, at least skim thru it with a couple of friends is Sobota's Histology Atlas.

Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, Self-Assessment Review has very good and well explained questions.